We all go through phases. I had a pretty big one while I was in college. It was the sort of phase you can only go through in college actually. I became infatuated with one of the greatest cultural phenomenon of the 20th century. I was a Dead Head. Yes, I was a rabid fan of the Grateful Dead. I went so deep I was even a collected of live tapes. At one point in time I had hundreds of hours of live recordings of the Grateful Dead. I could listen to a song and tell from the arrangement what era of Dead it was…and probably pin point it down to what year.
One of the great songs of the early era was Ronald “Pigpen” McKernan version of the standard “Turn on Your Lovelight”. It was usually at the very end of concerts, played as an encore. The song is written from the perspective of a jilted lover, begging the object of affection to “turn on their love light and shine it on me.”
For us today, a love light functions in the exact opposite direction.
Our scripture passage this weekend is Luke 1:67-80
Then his father, Zechariah, was filled with the Holy Spirit and gave this prophecy:
“Praise the Lord, the God of Israel,
because he has visited and redeemed his people.
He has sent us a mighty Savior
from the royal line of his servant David,
just as he promised
through his holy prophets long ago.
Now we will be saved from our enemies
and from all who hate us.
He has been merciful to our ancestors
by remembering his sacred covenant—
the covenant he swore with an oath
to our ancestor Abraham.
We have been rescued from our enemies
so we can serve God without fear,
in holiness and righteousness
for as long as we live.
“And you, my little son,
will be called the prophet of the Most High,
because you will prepare the way for the Lord.
You will tell his people how to find salvation
through forgiveness of their sins.
Because of God’s tender mercy,
the morning light from heaven is about to break upon us,
to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death,
and to guide us to the path of peace.”
John grew up and became strong in spirit. And he lived in the wilderness until he began his public ministry to Israel. (NLT)
Zechariah is the Father of John the Baptist. This song and prophecy is written as a response to many things. The first is his praise to God because he thought he would never be a Father. Zechariah and his wife Elizabeth were old and barren. The second is this is his first born son, an important member of the family for 1st century Jews. The last, and greatest, is this birth is the beginning of the fulfillment of the ultimate prophecy about a promised Messiah.
Zechariah’s son John is to be the promised forerunner and Zechariah knows fully well what is coming. God is illuminating through love all of the things of this world. The good and the bad will be seen for exactly what they are. Salvation is coming. Love is the greatest light.
We will be talking about this promise and many more things on Sunday when we gather. I would LOVE to see you there!
If you missed last Sunday, I would encourage you to take a few minutes and listen to last week. It will get you up to speed!
Explore Other Messages:
Chad Brooks - Dec 1, 2013
Coming to Hope
From Series: "Coming Home For Christmas"
Coming Home for Christmas is our conversation theme this Advent at New Song. Since we celebrate a God who comes to our world both fully human and fully divine, God himself came home for Christmas. Another dimension to our reflection and worship during the Christmas season is at the center of Christian belief--that Jesus Christ is coming again and we are looking forward to it. Christ is coming home. The big thing is us thinking about what does it mean for Jesus to come home, here on our earth for Christmas.
More From "Coming Home For Christmas"
*What is a sermon preview?
Sermon previews are released on Friday’s. They are to give YOU a short glimpse of what the conversation is going to be like on Sunday morning. On Monday, the preview is updated with some discussion questions, scripture guide and an mp3 of the sermon. I do these for 2 reasons. The first is so God can continue working in your life throughout the week. The second is for you to share this with a friend. I invite and encourage you to share the preview on Facebook/Twitter and through email.